‘Why You Ride (or Don’t Ride)‘ is a series where you, our faithful readers, share your transportation routines in L.A. and your thoughts on how to make things better – read more about the concept here.
Who You Are:
Your Transportation Routine:
How often do you drive and for what purpose?
I drive locally – to the grocery store, hardware store, Westside Pavillion, Century City, fabric shop, into the Village for lunch, to Beverly Hills for shopping and doctor appts. I also go to the Pacific Paliasides, Santa Monica and Malibu to visit friends.
I take friends to Hollywood for shows and museums and up to the Hollywood Sign. I go when and where I want.
All places where there is no adequate Metro transportation without transferring many times. And Metro is not planning any easy solution in the future.
Where are you typically traveling from and going to?
My home that is located within 300 feet of a bus stop that will take me to Santa Clarita or downtown Los Angeles but nothing in between.
How many vehicles do you or your family have?
I have one vehicle.
How long does your commute typically take?
Less than 10 minutes by car. It could take up to an hour or longer by Metro.
Briefly, how would you describe your typical driving experience? Love it, deal with it, or hate it?
I love it!
On average, what do you spend each month on transportation?
$50 – $100
Do you use any forms of alternative transportation?
To old to learn how to ride a bicycle. No one has the same schedule or destination that I have.
Why do you drive?
Convenient, fast and comfortable – also safe if driving late at night.
Have you tried to use transit before? What was your experience?
Before I retired I checked on Metro schedules to take me to work.
As I lived in Westwood and worked in the South Bay area I would have had to take a bus to downtown L.A. then transfer to another bus to take me south and then transfer again to go west to my destination. Metro’s estimated time 3.5 hours each way. I drove the distance in about 30 minutes.
Metro has weird ways of telling a rider the buses to take to their destination. If I want to go to Westwood Village via Metro I am told to head east on a Santa Monica Boulevard bus to Beverly Hills and then transfer to a Wilshire Bus westbound and transfer again at Westwood Boulevard. Now, if I were to take a westbound Santa Monica Boulevard bus to Westwood Boulevard and transfer to a Westwood Boulevard bus it would save one transfer.
What could local transit agencies do to encourage you to take transit more often?
Create local links between Westwood and Century City on Wilshire, Beverly Glen, Santa Monica Boulevard and return. There are bus stops there, but buses do not serve the residents, they only offer long range ridership.
How do you feel about buses?
I’d ride a bus if there was a route that served my needs.
How do you feel about rail?
I’d ride rail if it there was a route that served my needs.
Given limited funds, how would you address L.A.’s transportation issues?
Create a long range plan for both north – south routes and the current east – west routes. Create more local bus routes – that take people where they want to go.